DIY Presta Tire Inflator

Having recently discussed DiY car bike racks and DiY bike storage racks here on Singletracks, up next for DiY is a Presta-compatible inflator chuck for an air compressor. If you don’t like to tinker and don’t care about saving a few bucks, stop right here and go purchase the Prestaflator, as it is essentially the same thing.

Still interested in doing it yourself? Okay, let’s build this!

Tools

  • Flathead screwdriver or 1/4in socket
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Knife or scissors

Materials

The tire inflator is available several places with prices ranging from $10 – $15, and they are all pretty much identical. Just make sure you get one that includes the “chuck” end that goes into the quick release on your air compressor.

I chose the Avenir hose due to the price and the dual-head design. There are other replacement hoses that will also work, such as Silca or Lezyne, but they cost a lot more.

The Kobalt hose repair kit includes a 1/4in threaded-to-barb adapter, as well as a barbed hose splicer. Either will work for our project, but since our inflator has a 1/4in threaded outlet, we will use that adapter.

Instructions

  1. Using a wrench, remove the stock hose from the tire inflator. This can be saved for later use, if desired.
  2. Using the stock hose as a guide, cut the Avenir replacement hose to about the same length.
  3. Wrap the threads of the 1/4″ adapter with teflon tape and screw it snugly into the inflator, where the stock one was removed.
  4. Slide a hose clamp onto the the cut end of the replacement hose and then slide that same end on to the exposed barbed portion of the 1/4in adapter. It will be snug, but work it all the way on.
  5. Using a small flathead screwdriver or a 1/4in socket, tighten the hose clamp. Make it snug, but don’t over tighten it as the barbs make the airtight seal and the clamp is just to keep it from sliding off.

That’s it! Your DiY inflator chuck is now ready to inflate tires with either Presta or Schrader valves! The pressure gauge works accurately, but it is also worth mentioning that the pressure bleed off valve only releases air from the tire on Schrader valves. With Presta valves it releases the air from the hose only, which helps make it easier to remove the head from the valve.

Even with the an air compressor and Presta-to-Schrader adapter, it is sometimes difficult to blast the air in fast enough to get a tubeless tire to seat. With this setup, however, ALL of the air makes it into the tire, so it should make mounting tubeless tires a lot easier.

Total cost: less than $35.00

Total assembly time: about 5 minutes.

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